Tuesday, 27 January 2015

New Year birthdays

Hello and hope your New Year has started well. Already we are almost at the end of January. Usually I look forward to a quiet month of reflection and general clearing up after the seasonal rush. January this year has been busy but I am making as much time as possible for crafting! 

Last year I gained so much pleasure (and therapy) from my making and especially with those items designated for friends and family. As I went through the design and making process of my Christmas makes- crochet scarves, hand warmers, brooches and headbands I was thinking of the recipient in every stitch. As I carefully chose fabrics for little cosmetic bags and 'tea wallets' I imagined how the recipient would use them and what a joy it is when someone speaks of their appreciation and enjoyment of the item, truly heartwarming.

Each New Year I have a plethora of family birthdays and for the last couple of years have planned to hand make my cards. So far this had not actually happened-there never seemed time before the birthdays commenced (on 6 Jan) so as usual, I ended up rushing out to buy what I needed, then, just like the Christmas cards I planned to make and did not find time for, was never really happy with the commercially produced cards available. So for this year's birthdays I was determined...things shall be different! 

So at the start of the month I set to like a dervish with a die cutter, 'The beast' (aka as the Big Shot Pro) has been lurking, awaiting the moment when it would produce wonderful shapes from various gorgeous papers I haven't been able to resist collecting over the last couple of years. I am so guilty of hoarding craft tools and materials unused. Are you? One of these was a Sizzix flower die. Putting the flower shapes together was so much fun using delightful creams and pink shades. Choosing cute buttons to go in the centre was too! I also love butterfly shapes -these mini ones are made from a Sizzix die for jewellery designs.

With lots of female birthdays coming up-what joy it was using gorgeous colours. 

Aren't we ladies great to make for?. Easy-such a plethora of prettiness possibility! I decided to focus on themes of pinks with cream and green accents, adding the butterflies and flowers. Here's one I made for a sister-in-law:

Next was a female friend. I used the same flower in different shades and a hand stamped sentiment: 
The background papers are by Graphic 45.

Then I found some clear stamps (stashed and unused so far!) and tried out some layouts.

I tried some tags as well-why didn't I use these before?? The gorgeous vintage 'butterflies and moths' stamp is by Tim Holtz.

Adding some cute mini flowers, leaves and buttons -isn't this a lovely sentiment? 

Then...came the challenge. The dreaded 'man card!' Why is it that men are so difficult to choose presents and cards for??
The eldest brother-in-law was to be 65. Yes! I thought. I have numbers-cutting die by Tim Holtz I'll do a 65 and go a bit vintage...hoping he wouldn't be offended!! 
As the brother-in-law has always enjoyed visits to Cornwall I thought nautical would be a good bet and popped a few ideas on my paperarty Pinterest board, Oscar's Loft
Let's go for a hand stamped stormy sea, with a lighthouse.
  It came out a bit too stormy!

Ah well I hope he liked it!

So at last I'm using some of my crafty stash and have finally actually made some cards.

See you soon!

Best wishes
Alison xx